Fake degrees: What are the legal consequences?

Attorney Fajer Ahmed

Everyone seems to be talking about ‘fake degrees’ – from online memes to radio shows to newspaper articles. The media are exploding with questions like: “What are the legal consequences for those who forged their certificates?” and “How many people forged certificates?” and maybe more importantly, “Who forged the certificates?” These questions should not be taken lightly and we should trust that the governmental officials will do all that they need to do to protect everyone.

As for the legal consequences, employers under Kuwait labor law “may terminate the employment contract with immediate effect if the employee obtained the job by means of dishonesty such as fraud and cheating. Such termination shall be without notice, compensation or end of services benefit”.

Also, fraud is a crime punishable under Kuwait penal law, with punishments of up to seven years in jail depending on the document that is being forged. According to the Kuwaiti penal code, the penalty for a person who commits forgery of an official document is imprisonment up to seven years and/or a financial penalty.

In the event where forgery is committed by a governmental employee, the penalty will increase to up to 10 years of imprisonment and/or a financial penalty. If the document is not an official document, the penalty would be up to three years of imprisonment and/or a financial penalty. To differentiate between an official and non-official document, a person must see if the document is authenticated by officials or not. If the document is authenticated, then the document is official.


By Attorney Fajer Ahmed
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